Smoking associated with severity of psoriasis


Editor's Note: This study was supported by the Istituto Dermopatico dell'Immacolata, Istituto di Ricovero e Cura a Carattere Scientifico, and by the Progetto Ricerca Corrente 2003, Italian Ministry of Health, Rome.

Smoking and Obesity More Prevalent Among Psoriasis Patients
In another article, researchers report that the prevalence of both smoking and obesity is higher among patients with psoriasis than in the general population.

Mark D. Herron, M.D., now in private practice in Montgomery, Ala., and colleagues from the University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, studied the impact of obesity and smoking on psoriasis. A case series of patients with psoriasis enrolled in the prospective Utah Psoriasis Initiative (UPI) was compared with three population databases: the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System of the Utah population, the 1998 patient-member survey from the National Psoriasis Foundation, and 500 adult patients who attend the University of Utah Department of Dermatology clinics and do not have psoriasis.

"The prevalence of obesity in patients within the UPI population was higher than that in the general Utah population (34 percent vs. 18 percent) and higher than that in the non-psoriatic population attending our clinics," the authors write. "The prevalence of smoking in the UPI population was higher than in the general Utah population (37 percent vs. 13 percent) and higher than in the non-psoriatic population."

The authors found that obesity appears to be the consequence of psoriasis, and not a risk factor for onset of the disease. "Smoking appears to have a role in the onset of psoriasis, but obesity does not," they write.

"It seems certain that the cost of providing care for psoriasis when coupled with the increased frequency of obesity and smoking in patients attending clinics such as ours will continue to increase," the authors conclude. "An effor

Contact: Cristina Fortes, Ph.D.
JAMA and Archives Journals

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